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Wednesday, September 23, 2015

ALBANY — New York State Bar Association President David P. Miranda today urged the U.S. Senate to swiftly hold confirmation votes on 13 pending judicial nominees, including three for federal courts in New York.

"Each of the 13 nominees have been reported out of the Senate Judiciary Committee. While there is no known controversy surrounding the individual nominees, there have been extensive and deliberate delays in scheduling confirmation votes by the full Senate," said Miranda.

If confirmed, two of the nominees, LaShann DeArcy Hall and Ann Donnelly, would fill vacancies in the Eastern District of New York that were created Oct. 1, 2014 and May 5, respectively. In the Western District of New York, Lawrence Vilardo has been nominated to a judgeship that has been vacant since Jan. 1. The three nominations were reported out of the Judiciary Committee on June 4.

"We appreciate the efforts of Senator Charles E. Schumer to move these critical nominations to the Senate floor for a confirmation vote," Miranda said. "These delays undermine access to justice as well as the nation's economy."

In New York, the vacancies have an especially significant impact as individuals and corporations must wait longer to have their day in court. All four of the state's federal district courts are categorized as "congested courts," meaning that their caseload numbers exceed the average of those in the entire federal system.

"Justice delayed is justice denied. We urge swift confirmation of qualified nominees to fill all vacancies in the federal courts to alleviate increased caseloads and resulting delays for litigants," Miranda said.

The 74,000-member New York State Bar Association is the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. It was founded in 1876.

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